6. Vista will be the last major release of Microsoft Windows. The next generation of operating environments will be more modular and will be updated incrementally. The era of monolithic deployments of software releases is nearing an end. Microsoft will be a visible player in this movement, and the result will be more-flexible updates to Windows and a new focus on quality overall. Lundquist: Microsoft needs big operating systems to make big revenues. The subscription model does not work well for Redmond. Itll come up with another version even if it is a new improved Vista.Lundquist: I dont think so. PCs will need to become energy managers, secure data managers and reliability managers, all of which would work well in a thin-client environment. Managing the current and the next crop of PCs will be as difficult as ever. 8. By 2010, 60 percent of the worldwide cellular population will be "trackable" via an emerging "follow-me Internet." Local regulations have arisen to protect users privacy, but growing demands for national safety and civil protection are relaxing some of the initial privacy limitations. Marketing incentives will also push users to forgo privacy concerns, and many other scenarios will enable outsiders to track their users. Lundquist: This is true and happening as we speak. Users and government agencies will make the vendors provide a means to opt out on trackable technology, but new applications and incentives will make trackable technology fun, exciting and profitable. 9. Through 2011, enterprises will waste $100 billion buying the wrong networking technologies and services. Enterprises are missing out on opportunities to build a network that would put them at a competitive advantage. Instead, they follow outdated design practices and collectively will waste at least $100 billion in the next five years. Lundquist: Again, I think this is a reduction in current spending mistakes. These big numbers are tough to track, but I think Gartner is correct in saying that too many companies will miss out on new opportunities because they are stuck in the muck of past decisions. 10. By 2008, nearly 50 percent of data centers worldwide will lack the necessary power and cooling capacity to support high-density equipment. With higher densities of processors proliferating, problems in this area continue to grow. Although the power and cooling challenge of high-density computer equipment will persist in the short term, a convergence of innovative technologies will begin to mitigate the problem by 2010. Lundquist: Im glad this made the list. There is a crunch coming and getting your data center in order should be an IT priority for 2007. eWEEK Editorial Director Eric Lundquist can be reached at email@example.com. Check out eWEEK.coms for the latest news, views and analysis on servers, switches and networking protocols for the enterprise and small businesses.
7. By 2010, the average TCO (total cost of ownership) of new PCs will fall by 50 percent. The growing importance and focus on manageability, automation and reliability will provide a welcome means of differentiating PCs in a market that is increasingly commoditized. Many of the manageability and support tools will be broadly available across multiple vendors. However, vendors that can leverage these tools further and can graduate from claims of "goodness" to concrete examples of cost savings will have a market advantage.